Wallace Greenslade, who was the radio show's announcer for most of its run through the 1950s, died in 1961. Andrew Timothy had in fact been the original announcer for the radio shows in the early days, so it was fitting that he was given the job of announcing the last one of all. See more »
[whispering, to Harry and Peter]
One, two, three.
Spike Milligan, Harry Secombe, Peter Sellers:
[Variety of welcome, thank you speeches, all unintelligible]
They haven't quite got the hang of it yet, but after another smoke they should be switched on. If you are switched on, I am empowered by the governors of BBC Wireless to say "Good Evening" in that order. I also have it on good authority that my name is Clapham Junction, but I'll have that checked out later. When I announced the first Goon Show in a field off Tiverton, I was 30... I am ...
See more »
After the closing titles, Spike Milligan shouts "Now get out!" at the audience. See more »
A Goon fan from an early age, thanks to radio repeats in the mid-1970s, I can now revisit the source of so much of my childhood mirth via the regular Goon reruns on cable radio. And to me, the original shows now vary from plainly terrible (early), through spotty (mid period), to inspired genius going into orbit (last couple of years). They do really seem to have become "more switched on" as they progressed.
Then there's this one-off special, taped in 1972. Fans will probably know the story by now: t'was the 50th anniversary of BBC Radio; Milligan supposedly didn't want to do the show at all and had to be cajoled into it, finally cobbling together a script in a couple of days; some of yer actual Royals were present in the audience... yes all true but the main attraction here is to actually see a Goon Show taking place, since apart from a couple of very dodgy films and 1960s TV recreations, this is the only visual record we have available. (Surprising -perhaps- that nobody thought to film any of the original performances when the show was at its peak).
There's no real plot to this reunion effort, but since when did that matter much with the Goons at their best? Some of the actual gags here might be weak (although I'd disagree with their being especially crude, as mentioned elsehwere), but there are moments of Goonish genius throughout. And it's great fun for fans. The team's comic timing is pretty much still there. Spot the in-jokes, of which there are many (watch for the orchestra tapping their batons back at their conductor!). Listen out for a brilliant, inspired sound collage (BBC Radiophonics?) representing Major Bloodnok taking a dose of his "perversions" to ward off the approaching Red Bladder. Watch the cast corpse repeatedly. Marvel at the period fashions (or lack of). And yes, you can finally see why Max Geldray was nicknamed "Conks".
Various edits exist, and some are fairly severe, with up to 30 minutes of material missing.
0 of 0 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?